Most Damaging Presidential Run, Ever?

Has any major party nominee for president ever damaged his reputation in this manner?

Trump And GOP Elephant

I noted earlier this morning that Donald Trump’s brand has been damaged by his presidential run. I’m trying without success to think of a major party nominee who managed to so seriously diminish his previous reputation.

It’s easy to think of vice presidential nominees in this category. Dan Quayle and Sarah Palin come most readily to mind. Jim Stockdale and Geraldine Ferraro are arguably also in that category. But they were all relative unknowns on the national stage before being plucked from obscurity to fill the second banana role. Quayle managed to become, mostly unfairly, a national laughingstock even though he went on to win the vice presidency.

There are also failed contenders for a presidential  nomination who fall into this category, with Rick Perry’s 2012 run the most obvious.  Oops.

Mitt Romney took a beating in 2012 but his reputation quickly recovered, so much so that many still pine for him to somehow replace Trump on the ballot this go-round. John McCain seemed to go off the rails with the Palin pick but is still a major player in foreign and military policy. John Kerry rebounded to serve as Secretary of State. Al Gore got fat and grew a beard but soon rebounded as a significant figure in the Democratic Party. (And, yes, he actually got more votes in 2000 than his opponent, so he’s in a different category anyway.) Bob Dole, despite an awful campaign in 1996, remains a beloved figure.

George H.W. Bush and Jimmy Carter are the only elected presidents to lose re-election bids in my lifetime but both quickly assumed elder statesman roles.

Walter Mondale and Mike Dukakis more-or-less went away after their defeats, which perhaps obscured their previous accomplishments. But neither was ever reviled or, save for an unfortunate tank ride, thought of as clowns, let alone louts.

FILED UNDER: *FEATURED, Campaign 2016, US Politics
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. CSK says:

    Here’s the difference: Trump has always had a reputation as a lout. Certainly he enhanced it during this campaign, but it wasn’t something he acquired as a result of the campaign.

    And…he appears to revel in being a lout, which also sets him apart from all the others.

  2. michael reynolds says:

    James:

    You have a bad cut-and-paste in the last couple of grafs. (Says the man who’ll spend the day wincing at my copy-editor’s eye-rolling marginal notes.)

  3. James Joyner says:

    @CSK: Maybe so. I’ve never seen any of the various “Apprentice” shows, so mostly viewed him peripherally. I thought he was a blowhard and a showman with a very crass sense of luxury. But I never thought of him as a racist, serial sexual assaulter, misogynist, and all-around nasty dude.

  4. michael reynolds says:

    We’ve never had a major candidate like Trump. As a rule major parties don’t nominate rancid, hate-filled orange sausages.

    Personally I’m looking forward to Trump hosting the Breitbart channel game show: Grab ‘Em By The Pussy. #GEBTP.

  5. Joe says:

    @James Joyner:

    But I never thought of him as a racist, serial sexual assaulter, misogynist, and all-around nasty dude.

    That’s only because you never really thought of him. Most people didn’t. Didn’t have to. Didn’t need to. He was better off that way. The branding error explained in your other thread was his error of not leaving well enough alone for himself (and not pushing himself on the rest of us – with all that phrase implies).

  6. CSK says:

    @James Joyner:

    I think you probably have to have been from the greater New York area or at least the northeast to have appreciated fully what a one-man creepshow Trump has always been. When his first wife had breast augmentation surgery, he went to the tabloids and told them he couldn’t bear to touch those “horrible fake plastic tits.” Headlines in the Post and Daily News. This was in the late 1980s-early 1990s. He boasted about his adulteries. his “books.” He had a rep for cheating small business people; he tried to sue a writer who claimed his net worth was less than Trump stated it was. You didn’t even have to follow Trump to know this; he was in-everyone’s face all the time.

  7. CSK says:

    @michael reynolds:

    I was thinking it might be called The Snatch Game.

  8. C. Clavin says:

    I’ve always seen Trump for what he is…so my view hasn’t changed much.
    I think McCain did himself more damage with the Sarah Palin debacle.
    He lost all credibility…whereas Trump never had any to lose.

  9. Loviatar says:

    Most Damaging Presidential Run, Ever?

    Yeah, if you still call yourself a Republican.

    Why I can’t understand the empathy for James Joyner.

    Meet Martha And Sara

    This is what he is against, this is what he advocates and votes against. This is what the Republican party would like to see ripped from their fellow Americans. But I guess its impolite to point that out.

  10. Laura Koerber says:

    Trump accurately reflects the Republican base. He got the nomination by being more openly racist, more openly nasty and mean and cruel than the other candidates They like the simple-minedness of his “policy” proposals. Most of all they like his message that the real true American are under attack by those othr people who ate to blame for everything. They liked him because they could see that he was a bully and they thought he would be a bully on their behalf.

    IN ohter words, he communicated the message Republican politicians have been using as their primary election tactic for the last thirty years. He just did it more overtly than the norm.

    Trump is different from other Republican politicians only in the sense that hot pink is different from regular pink. He overtly stated what others hinted.

    If Trump was winning , every Republican politicians would be happily supporting him. He is not different in kind from the rest of the party. He is the natural result of a party that made the decision decades ago to increase their base by appealing to the rightwing lunatic fringe.

    The Republican party used to have conservative, moderate and even liberal members. There used to be diversity of ideas and a genuine interest in policy. Now its the party of Know-Nothings, Robber Barons, Ayn Rand pseudo-intellectuals and reactionary cranks and weirdos.

    The trick the Republican leadership has been pulling is this: the Robber Baron and Ayn Rand psueds at the top of the party get elected by dog-whistling to the Know-Nothings, the cranks and weirdos, and the people who want to blame everything on bums or welfare or the gay agenda or Mexican rapists or whoever the R’s have decided to hate on. Then the Robber barons and Ayn Rand psueds pass policies that harm everyone, including their own base. IT was a good trick and it has worked over and over and over.

    It does appear that Trump, while embodying the Republican hate message, has also to the limited extent that he ever talks policy, been at least somewhat opposed to the Robber Barons and AynRandpsueds. That’s the only real difference between hi and other Republican poiticans.

    So hopefully this election has not just ruined Trump’s brand. Hopefuly it has ruined the Republican brand, too. The only way back to the Republican party of Bob Dole’s era or the first Bush is to recognize that Trump is not a fluke, the the Republican party has become the party or reactionaires and ideologues, dependent upon hatemongering to get through the primaires. This is tha party taht Atwood and Rove created..

  11. michael reynolds says:

    @Loviatar:

    Did you see the Al Smith dinner? Did you see the reaction to Trump’s loutish behavior? That’s you, here. You seem determined to play the Javert role, but that’s more about you than it is about any cause you may imagine you’re promoting. When lefties go full-on commissar all they do is turn people off.

    We can make the case that the GOP is Dr. Frankenstein to Trump’s monster, and I do, but the goal is not to satisfy ourselves that we are pure, but rather to win. And for that we need people like a somewhat reformed Virginia Republican. Big tent. Inside the tent pissing out, not outside pissing in. Right? Or do you see some advantage in pushing potential allies away?

  12. michael reynolds says:

    @Laura Koerber:

    Well said.

  13. michael reynolds says:

    @CSK:
    Hah!

  14. SKI says:

    @CSK:

    I think you probably have to have been from the greater New York area or at least the northeast to have appreciated fully what a one-man creepshow Trump has always been.

    This. My wife is from northern Jersey and couldn’t believe anyone was taking him seriously. His presence on NY media for decades has accurately depicted him as a rude, boorish mysoginist. It’s pretty amazing how being on TV gave him a positive patina nationally.

  15. dxq says:

    This is tha party taht Atwood and Rove created..

    Margret Atwood didn’t create the GOP, she just described a future scenario after the Christianists took over. 😀

  16. CSK says:

    @SKI:

    I’ve never seen The Apprentice nor any of its iterations, so I can’t really comment on how he came across on the show. But your wife is quite right: Trump was never anything but an object of contempt in the northeast. I think most of the Republican establishment knew that as well, which is why they didn’t take his entry into the race seriously at first. The attitude seems to have been: “We don’t have to worry about this buffoon, because no sentient being will take him seriously.”

    As it turns out, 15 million allegedly sentient beings did take him seriously, on the basis of their acquaintance with him as a reality show star.

  17. Dumb Brit says:

    Yep

  18. CSK says:

    @C. Clavin:

    I’m not disputing that you’ve always seen Trump for what he is, but by “always” do you mean “the past few years,” or do you mean since 1980? Because those of us who’ve spent our entire young adult and adult years with Trump in our faces (what a truly disgusting image) may find this whole situation even more appalling than you do.

    Just curious.

  19. Loviatar says:

    @michael reynolds:

    And for that we need people like a somewhat reformed Virginia Republican.

    But the funny thing is, he is not a reformed Republican. He is a Republican.

    The description that Laura Koerber used and you congratulated her on, guess what thats James Joyner.

    The Robber Baron and Ayn Rand psueds at the top of the party get elected by dog-whistling to the Know-Nothings, the cranks and weirdos, and the people who want to blame everything on bums or welfare or the gay agenda or Mexican rapists or whoever the R’s have decided to hate on. Then the Robber barons and Ayn Rand psueds pass policies that harm everyone, including their own base.

  20. charon says:

    @Laura Koerber:

    So hopefully this election has not just ruined Trump’s brand. Hopefuly it has ruined the Republican brand, too.

    It has at least affected the GOP reputation, negatively, and also empowered the Trumpist factions against the others, especially the Kasich and Bush sorts.

  21. JKB says:

    @dxq: Margret Atwood didn’t create the GOP, she just described a future scenario after the Christianists took over.

    Funny, while Atwood’s used crosses and Biblical quotes to color her future scenario, the society looked and acted in its treatment of women and homosexuals like the Islamic Republic exemplified by Iran.

  22. charon says:

    @JKB:

    Yeah, the islamic version of Islamo-Christianity does resemble the Christian version quite bigly.

  23. Terrye Cravens says:

    There was Zachary Taylor and the Whigs. It was the end of the Whigs.

  24. JR says:

    @Laura Koerber: Bingo. The problem for Republicans is that the party leaders are still in complete denial about this.

  25. Liberal Capitalist says:

    Yeah…

    Remember back, just a few years ago, when candidates would say things like “my opponent and I have a difference of opinion on that subject”… or … “My opponent may not understand all the details of that issue”… rather than calling each other a liar, because that was just impolite in a presidential campaign?

    Good times.

  26. Terrye Cravens says:

    @C. Clavin: McCain was trying to appease the rightwing of his party. They kept screaming that he was a Rino and so he chose Palin to pacify them. And it was a mistake, but I think he was pushed into it. There is no excuse for people choosing Trump.

  27. michael reynolds says:

    @JKB:

    Funny, while Atwood’s used crosses and Biblical quotes to color her future scenario, the society looked and acted in its treatment of women and homosexuals like the Islamic Republic exemplified by Iran.

    Or North Carolina.

  28. Terrye Cravens says:

    @Laura Koerber: I am not sure that is entirely true. Most Republicans did not vote for Trump in the primaries and many of the people voting in the primaries were not even Republicans, much less the base. A majority would rather see someone else as the nominee right now. However, the Republicans who did not support Trump or his message were not united enough to stop him and many of them are partisan enough that they will vote for him even if they dislike the man.

  29. Gromitt Gunn says:

    @JKB: Theocratic governments, like all authoritarian governments, need to find groups of people to oppress in order to convince those in the in-groups of the rightness of their rule and those more towards the margins that they don’t want to the next group targeted.

    Trump’s supporters all assume they will be part of the in-group, finally able to exact authoritarian revenge in those who have wronged them.

  30. charon says:

    @Terrye Cravens:

    Trump will stay influential in the GOP going forward

    regardless of what Washington DC Republicans might think, the base just doesn’t take Ryan’s side against Trump.
    -1x-1.jpg

    http://www.boomantribune.com/story/2016/10/20/142421/24

  31. Gromitt Gunn says:

    @CSK: Terribly sorry to disappoint you, but RuPaul’s Drag Race got there first.

  32. CSK says:

    @Gromitt Gunn:

    Oh, that wouldn’t matter to Trump. If the man could appropriate “when in the course of human events,” copyright it, and make money off it, believe me (as he would say), he would. He stole “Make America Great” from Reagan and added “again” to it.

  33. C. Clavin says:

    @Loviatar:
    Reynolds is right…but thanks for the video…very moving.

  34. JKB says:

    @Gromitt Gunn:

    Or more likely, the Trump supporters see sending Trump to DC where the DC establishment (Rep and Dem) will quickly tear down the imperial presidency they’ve built up for their own survival. And while the “elite” are scrambling and the agencies are scrambling, the rest of the country can get on with normal life.

    As for foreign policy, well, the Philippines have turned toward China, we are involved in 5 undeclared wars in the Middle East, East Asia, and Africa, Iran has been facilitated to getting nuclear weapons sooner rather than later…. Trump can hardly make things worse, except disrupt a few sinecures at NATO.

    But in the end, Donald Trump is not Hillary Clinton. Donald Trump may do bad, Hillary has done bad. And most of all, Hillary will start a war to cover up her crimes.

  35. Rafer Janders says:

    @JKB:

    Funny, while Atwood’s used crosses and Biblical quotes to color her future scenario, the society looked and acted in its treatment of women and homosexuals like the Islamic Republic exemplified by Iran.

    The one that Ronald Reagan illegally sold missiles and other advanced weaponry to, right? That Iran?

  36. anjin-san says:

    @JKB:

    her crimes.

    What crimes has Hillary committed? Please be specific…

  37. Laura Koerber says:

    @dxq: I meant LEE Atwood. THough Margaret does have a lot to say about what passes for conservative thought these days.

  38. wr says:

    @JKB: “Funny, while Atwood’s used crosses and Biblical quotes to color her future scenario, the society looked and acted in its treatment of women and homosexuals like the Islamic Republic exemplified by Iran.”

    It’s really neither funny nor surprising. It turns out when you get down to the fundamentalist level, all religions are pretty much the same, especially in their loathing of women. Even Judaism.

  39. al-Ameda says:

    @JKB:

    But in the end, Donald Trump is not Hillary Clinton. Donald Trump may do bad, Hillary has done bad. And most of all, Hillary will start a war to cover up her crimes.

    in the past 5 years Republicans have investigated Hillary Clinton 9 times, and to my knowledge none of those 9 investigations have resulted in identifying any lawbreaking activities, and there have been no charges brought against her, nor (of course) any prosecution.

    That said, feel free to enumerate any crimes that Hillary has been convicted of.

  40. Laura Koerber says:

    @Terrye Cravens: I understand your point, but I don’t think it really matters if there are still reasonable people in the Republican party if they let the unreasonable ones dominate the primaries and then vote for the extremists that get the nomination. In fact, I’m not sure that kind of behavior is very reasonable. After all, Hillary is a moderate Democrat who supports the kind of policies that are almost old-fashioned in the sense of being thoroughly normative. Choosing to vote for Trump over a mainstream middle of the road Democrat seems….like a decision to support craziness. This race is not the only one where Republicans who think of themselves as moderate by nature, fact oriented, interested in policy, have voted for Republican candidates that were extremists either in ideological terms or religious terms (or both), rather than vote for a mainstream Dem. That’s kind of like eating shit but claiming to be in one’s true heart a gourmet.

    Of course lots of people who are either philosophically or temperamentally moderate have left the Republican party.

    I used to be able to vote for Republicans every now and then. It would be good for us as a nation to restore the Republican party to the old party that was capable of compromise, capable of thinking outside of an ideological box, and discussed issues during campaigns instead of hiding their goals behind appeals to the worst in human nature. HEck I am almost nostalgic for Nixon.

  41. Hal_10000 says:

    The bad side of our Presidential horse-race is that it frequently amplifies candidates’ faults beyond reason. So Quayle’s occasional brain farts become earth-threatening idiocy, Romney’s business dealing literally kill people, Kerry’s a terrible loser, Clinton is a vile harpy, Stockdale’s an idiot (seriously, read up on what a great man Stockdale was).

    That’s the downside. The upside is that it is hard for a truly bad person to conceal who he is. He might fool people for a little while. But eventually his true nature will come out. Trump’s did.

  42. Inhuman99 says:

    Trump’s closing arguments today apparently consisted of make America great again, and pointing out that he will sue all of his accusers once the election is over, as they are all lying. Denial is clearly not just a river in Egypt.

    Folks, I screwed up my handle I use on this great blog…meant to log in as inhumans99.

  43. Tony W says:
  44. JKB says:

    @al-Ameda: That said, feel free to enumerate any crimes that Hillary has been convicted of.

    Hillary has been fortunate in the application of prosecutorial “discretion”. But the subversion of the rule of law does not nullify the crimes, it just exempts from prosecution. But as the Bill Cosby case in PA has shown, an unwritten deal with one prosecutor is not necessarily enforceable upon future prosecutors.

    But, but of course, there are many other areas in Hillary’s career that create enough probable cause for criminal investigation.

    If Hillary really wanted to put her disclosure of classified material to bed, she would have demanded the FBI case be presented to a grand jury made up of honest citizens whose political, social or business futures were not dependent upon exercising the proper “discretion”, but rather can decide based upon the law whether to return a true bill or not.

  45. charon says:

    @Laura Koerber:

    I meant LEE Atwood.

    Lee Atwater, no?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lee_Atwater

  46. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @dxq:

    Pretty sure she meant Atwater

  47. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @JKB:

    You didn’t answer the question, despite that word salad of a response.

    What statutes has she violated, and be specific as to how please.

  48. CSK says:

    @Tony W:

    “Three score and ten years ago, my mother, Mrs Frederick Drumpf, brought forth on this continent a loathsome excrescense…”

  49. dxq says:

    Okay, so even putting a graphical smiley face at the end, people still couldn’t tell it was a joke. Is it Literal Day? Nobody told me.

  50. Jen says:

    @Laura Koerber: It’s all in good fun…I think Lee Atwater is who you meant, but the Atwood/Handmaid’s Tale was just too ripe to pass up!

  51. Pch101 says:

    @Laura Koerber:

    The only way back to the Republican party of Bob Dole’s era or the first Bush is to recognize that Trump is not a fluke

    By 1964, the GOP presidential candidate was campaigning against civil rights, Strom Thurmond had switched parties in reaction to the Civil Rights Act, and George HW Bush was converting Texas Democrats into Republicans by opposing the Civil Rights Act.

    The National Review, the new “intellectual” voice of the conservative movement, had already supported segregation. The key differences between Buckley’s magazine and the John Birch Society was that the former favored a more civil tone and opposed antisemitism.

    Ronald Reagan began his 1980 campaign by telling white rural Mississippi that he supported states rights. They knew what he meant, even while Reagan supporters were in denial over what he meant.

    Racism has been integral to Republican party politics for decades. But there is a wing of the party that is firmly in denial about this, while another wing believes that whites are the real victims of racism. This is nothing new and Trump is no aberration except for his crudeness.

  52. Paul Hooson says:

    Trump’s jokes really bombed at that Catholic charity dinner party, drawing boo’s from the audience. Then, I though about what he also did for the Republican Party, realizing that he ruined two parties this year.

  53. Mikey says:

    @JKB: So, no crimes, then? Got it.

  54. CSK says:

    @Hal_10000:

    Well, Trump’s bad qualities were always on display, and the campaign certainly brought them into very sharp focus, but the bad qualities constitute features, not bugs, for his fans.

    A sexual predator? Hey, he’s just an alpha male irresistible to women.
    A vulgarian? Hey, he tells it like it is!
    An ignoramus? Hey, we don’t need no experts.

  55. R.Dave says:

    @Loviatar: But I guess its impolite to point that out.

    Yes, in this case it is.

  56. gVOR08 says:

    @CSK: Per Wiki the Reagan slogan was “Let’s Make America Great Again”. So Trump just dropped “Let’s”. Too collectivist, I guess, since Trump’s the only one who can make America great again.

  57. CSK says:

    @gVOR08:

    You’re right. Thanks. Yes, “let’s”–with its suggestion of inclusion–does have sinister collectivist overtones, doesn’t it?

  58. Mu says:

    I just wonder how surprised the establishment Republicans were by Trump’s success. Did they really think the children of the Southern Democrats started voting for them because they were suddenly enthralled by their economic politics? Did they not realize they inherited the South because the Democrats said “Bigots, no thanks”? That’s the prime mystery of this election for me, that the Republican political class really didn’t know its base, and that it was a bunch of racist dicks.

  59. al-Ameda says:

    @JKB:

    But, but of course, there are many other areas in Hillary’s career that create enough probable cause for criminal investigation.

    Oh yeah, prosecutorial discretion indeed.
    Amazing, isn’t it? After nearly 25 years of Republican-directed federally funded endless investigations of Bill and Hillary Clinton, Republicans have not identified a single criminal act committed by Hillary Clinton.

  60. Just 'nutha ig'rant cracker says:

    @Terrye Cravens: I hope that you are right about the voters, but from what I recall watching the primary progress, the guys on the stage didn’t run as “I am not Trump” unless running as Trump 2.0 counts. And the only guy who tried to run as “Not Trump” was JEB! and he was thrown under the bus by the voters very quickly.

  61. Just 'nutha ig'rant cracker says:

    @wr: I think it’s important to remember that the concept of women and children as other than property is a relatively new concept in the overall history of civilization. Religion in general predates the “other than property” belief.

  62. Tony W says:

    @al-Ameda:

    Republican-directed federally funded endless investigations

    Ah yes, the party of fiscal responsibility.

  63. Just 'nutha ig'rant cracker says:

    @Hal_10000: And what do you make of the point that charon’s link referenced regarding the 24% of Republicans who want Trump to be the face of the party and the 51% who support Trump’s policies over those of Paul Ryan?

  64. gVOR08 says:

    @Hal_10000:

    So Quayle’s occasional brain farts become earth-threatening idiocy

    No one thought Quayle was earth-threatening. At least as long as HW remained alive and able to carry out his duties. You are arguing that it was unfair to regard Quayle as not too bright. Having watched both his VP debates I’d have to say you are arguing from facts not in evidence. Even setting aside Bentsen’s “you’re no John Kennedy” remark, Quayle was embarrassing against both Bentsen and four years later Gore.

    In the Gore/Quayle/Stockdale debate Admiral Stockdale left a very poor impression. A great deal of this was due to Perot’s total mismanagement. He made Stockdale a provisional appointment to be replaced later, then Perot dropped out temporarily. When he restarted, he gave Stockdale a week’s notice he’d be in the debate. It’s also possible that Alzheimer’s was beginning to have an effect. My own reaction was contempt toward Perot for putting Stockdale in that position, but the fact remains that in his big political appearance Stockdale left a poor impression. You can’t blame the Democrats or the general public for that.

    Like John McCain in ’08, you can honor Stockdale’s service without feeling either was qualified for the office he sought.

  65. Gustopher says:

    @gVOR08: I never understood the Stockdale bashing — his only mistake was to be on the ticket with Perot, who was completely crazy.

    He wasn’t a politician, and he ran out of f.cks to give pretty early, but he was awesome. His response to the question of abortion, for instance.

    https://www.c-span.org/video/?c4466842/stockdale-abortion

    If, somehow, Perot had been elected, and then resigned because people were conspiring to destroy his daughter’s wedding, we would have been fine with Stockdale as a caretaker president.

    There are very, very few VP candidates who would have been terrible. Even Dan Quayle would have been something less than an existential threat. Palin would have been a disaster, though.

  66. Kylopod says:

    @Gustopher: James Stockdale was a great man and national hero whom I personally admire.

    That said, he came off as old and out of it at the 1992 vp debate. Maybe it was just a bad night for him, but age can have an effect on one’s faculties, and it looked like that was the case with him.

  67. Facebones says:

    @JKB: Still didn’t answer the question.You just think (like one of the blog hosts) that Hillary must have done SOMETHING so the answer is more investigations. Never mind the dozens that have been done so far, if Republicans just clap harder then this time they’ll get her!

    Heck, your own comment admits that no one found anything on her, And your solution is: Hillary should invite the FBI to investigate every aspect of her life! Get a life, already.

  68. James Pearce says:

    @charon:

    Trump will stay influential in the GOP going forward

    I’m not so sure. In the right-wing fever swamps, sure, especially if he starts up Trump TV. But in the actual party?

    Nov 9th will mark the last day Donald Trump has any influence in the GOP.

  69. barbintheboonies says:

    Both candidates are damaged Things will never get better with just two a$$holes to pick from If you pick one or the other you will get crazy or nothing.

  70. john430 says:

    From InstaPundit: “Trump hasn’t lost yet, but yeah: Even if Hillary wins, a lot of the country is angry. Remember: The Tea Party was polite, and was insulted and destroyed. Trump voters aren’t polite, and they’re angry. If Trump loses, what comes next? Nothing you want to see.”

    I know Whites, Hispanics, Blacks and Asians who have shocked me by saying they are voting for Trump because they are really, really angry about the direction of this country.

    Just saying…

  71. barbintheboonies says:

    The Clinton foundation has had a light shown on it also, and not so favorably. We`ll see if the media beats on that drum. I’m glad Trump is hurting he sure deserves a beating, but Hillary needs to be taking a few blows herself. We are screwed in 2016 best bumper sticker I have seen in this election. It is so true.

  72. Barry says:

    @James Pearce: “I’m not so sure. In the right-wing fever swamps, sure, especially if he starts up Trump TV. But in the actual party?”

    Those fever swamps are able to determine who wins the GOP primaries.

  73. Moosebreath says:

    @john430:

    “Remember: The Tea Party was polite, and was insulted and destroyed.”

    For definitions of polite which include shouting over the elected representatives at whose forums they showed up, bringing guns to forums to threaten people who disagreed with them, etc. In other words, not really.

  74. Barry says:

    @john430: “Remember: The Tea Party was polite, and was insulted and destroyed. Trump voters aren’t polite, and they’re angry. If Trump loses, what comes next? Nothing you want to see.””

    Fascinating world in which you live……..

  75. michael reynolds says:

    @john430:

    Angry are you? Well, Donald J. Trump has just what you need: a humongous tax cut. . . for me! Trump’s ‘plan’ would have saved me better than $180,000 last year.

    You people really are geniuses, you know? You don’t like ‘elites’ so you back the guy who wants to enrich the elites. Of course you do. Do you know why? Because you are stupid. Liberals are actually trying to save you imbeciles from the consequences of your own imbecility but you just absolutely insist on running up more debt for your children so that I can buy a villa in Europe.

    Explain that plan to your kids or grandkids. Explain how it was important to give the liberal kid’s book author a bunch of money that they will have to pay off – with interest – for the rest of their lives.

  76. James Pearce says:

    @Barry:

    Those fever swamps are able to determine who wins the GOP primaries.

    Post-Trump, I expect the fever swamps to have diminished influence and status, somewhat limiting their ability to determine who wins the GOP primaries.

    @john430:

    they are voting for Trump because they are really, really angry

    “Cooler heads will prevail.” It’s not just a saying. It’s a winning strategy.

  77. Scott O says:

    @john430: Can you please tell us what these people are angry about?

  78. JKB says:

    @Scott O:

    You might find this illuminating on your question of what “these people are angry about”:

    Chris Arnade, former Wall Street trader turned photographer and social chronicler, talks with EconTalk …He also discusses his transition into observer and photographer of drug addicts, the poor, and the forgotten parts of America.

    You know, I think what sticks out to me is the anger. The anger is kind of 3-pronged. One of it’s very much social. It’s a sense of feeling kind of diminished in terms of people caring about them, being made fun of: everything they do is laughed at. If they like NASCAR (National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing.), that’s made fun of. If they vape, then that’s considered wrong. They eat at McDonald’s, that’s cheap. So that’s kind of just–if they go to church, they are considered silly. So there’s a sense of just feeling like very much they are being mocked in terms of their lifestyle. But in terms of policy, I think there’s a sense of–there’s two frustrations. One frustration, immigration, the idea that companies are just–in so many towns you go to, the factories are just gone. They are, you know, there’s a factory, it’s just a rusted steel hulk. And it’s gone. And that’s very visceral to people that their factory has picked up and moved. And then there’s anger at TARP, at the bailout, at this idea that, you know, there’s two sets of rules: There’s a set of rules for me: when my factory moves, I don’t get a bailout. But when Wall Street, you know, collapses, they get a bailout. So it may not say to me, ‘Hey, I really don’t like the fact that AIG didn’t get a haircut and it was unfair,’ but they say ‘I can’t you, Wall Street, got a bailout. I can’t believe that when they failed, someone was there to help them. Their buddies were there to help them. And nobody is here to help me.’ So, it’s kind of three kind of sources of anger, I’d say.

    But none of the posters or commenters here would ever mock these people, would you? Beware, mocking is not soon forgotten. And more importantly, if Trump loses,, assuming no “Come to Jesus” by those of you who believe you are the betters, you should fear what comes next.

    The citizen must not be so narrowly circumscribed in his activities that, if he thinks differently from those in power, his only choice is either to perish or to destroy the machinery of state.

    Mises, Ludwig von (1927). Liberalism (p. 59)

  79. MBunge says:

    For those playing at home, two new tracking polls give Trump a lead of 2 points or less while a third says Hillary is 12 points up. However, none of that jibes with new state polls that have Trump up 3 in Texas and Hillary up 3 in Florida and 5 in Michigan.

    How could Trump be winning at all if he’s only up 3 in Texas? Hillary could be up 12 nationally and down just three in Texas, but how could she simultaneously be ahead only 3 in Florida and 5 in Michigan?

    Mike

  80. Scott O says:

    @JKB: I like McDonald’s but I’m so cheap I pack my own lunch. I don’t vape, I smoke. No NASCAR near me and I don’t attend sporting events but if someone invited me to a stock car race I bet I’d have a good time. I think church is silly but I can understand why many people like it. My Dad for example. But he’s voting for Hillary so maybe he doesn’t count.

    I wish there were more jobs that pay decently for those at the lower end of the wage scale. I don’t see it happening no matter who gets elected but do you know of some way to make things better for, what’s a good name for them, rustbelters?

    TARP, yeah when that first happened I was like WTF. But when sane people on both sides of the political spectrum said it was necessary I deferred to their judgement. The rising national debt concerns me but I know cutting taxes won’t fix that.

  81. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @michael reynolds:

    Well, Donald J. Trump has just what you need: a humongous tax cut. . . for me! Trump’s ‘plan’ would have saved me better than $180,000 last year.

    This. According to Vox’s calculator, we’d pay a tad over $500,000 less in federal income taxes – with no concept, explicit or otherwise, having been given as to how the government would make up the lost revenue.

  82. Andrew says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    Take away STEM or even STEAM from the education systems. It’s worked so far!!

    How else would math like Trump’s plan make sense?

  83. James Pearce says:

    @JKB:

    But none of the posters or commenters here would ever mock these people, would you?

    Of course we would, and Larry the Cable Guy and Jeff Foxworthy would mock them too.

    I mean, I appreciate these efforts to explain what is up with the rural right wing, but most of them -Chris Arnade and I’d include J.D. Vance too- don’t seem quite up to the task. Someone made fun of them because they like NASCAR and eat at McDonald’s? This doesn’t seem like a problem an actual adult should have….

    And I don’t believe many do. I think that’s what people are telling themselves to avoid tackling the actual problem. I mean, the right wants to elect Donald Trump to the presidency, and they think the problem is some liberal making fun of their NASCAR and the factory closing down 20 years ago?

  84. barbintheboonies says:

    @JKB: I liked what you said in the first part of your post, but the second part sounded a bit threatening. I do defend many of those blue collar hard working men and women, because many of my friends and family are those people. They are not all idiots and bigots. They are frightened that they will lose the way of life that they were brought up with. Sure some follow Trump foolishly, because he showed some compassion for them, even if it was a lie. Most of them know he is a jerk, but they do not know where to turn. Most of the companies they work for threaten to shut down if the Democrats put more regulations on them. These jobs are in their minds the best they can do right now for their families. Welfare is a very dirty word to them. They should be given some respect.

  85. PJ says:

    @MBunge:

    For those playing at home, two new tracking polls give Trump a lead of 2 points or less while a third says Hillary is 12 points up. However, none of that jibes with new state polls that have Trump up 3 in Texas and Hillary up 3 in Florida and 5 in Michigan.

    How could Trump be winning at all if he’s only up 3 in Texas? Hillary could be up 12 nationally and down just three in Texas, but how could she simultaneously be ahead only 3 in Florida and 5 in Michigan?

    Mike

    Some of the polls may be bad, which is why it is better to look at poll aggregators rather than single polls, but I do understand why you prefer the latter, and also why you only prefer some of them.

    Also, nominees have different strengths and weaknesses, both regional and sub group based. Bush 43 got a higher share of the Latino vote than Trump is going to get, Trump will get a high share of non college educated white men he will do very poorly among women for a number of obvious reasons. Texas may be explained by more Latinos voting for the Democrat or Ted Cruz supporters refusing to vote for Trump. Despite Trump cratering, he will still outperform in certain parts of the country.

    If you looked at Appalachia in 2008 you would be wondering why Obama was leading when his numbers were tanking, or if you looked at Utah this year, you’d wonder why Trump would have such high support in the rest of the country.

  86. michael reynolds says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    Yes, but you and I are going to create jobs. We will trickle down.

    So. Who do we hire? And to do what?

  87. michael reynolds says:

    @barbintheboonies:
    I have respect for “those people.” I come from those people. Oklahoma blood runs in my veins alongside the Kosher variety. I had a 16 year-old mother, was high school drop-out, know every trick for avoiding bill collectors, learned to swim in a sewage-covered bayou in the Florida panhandle. I was even a Lutheran altar boy. I am those people.

    The problem is not respecting them, the problem is that they won’t stop cutting their own throats, and frankly it gets hard to give a damn after 20 or 30 attempts. They’re as politically self-destructive as Palestinians, which is saying something. At the point where they started hating liberals for trying to keep unions alive, I mean, what do you do with those people?

    Now those people are bound and determined to solve their terrible worry (uh huh) over the national debt by cutting my taxes. And they hate me for actually raising my own taxes to help them. I’ve had more rational interactions with guys pushing shopping carts full of cans.

    You know what? There are help wanted signs all over Marin County, and I saw them in Reno and Vegas. Yeah, they’re lousy jobs, and yes if you’re flipping burgers in Marin you’re sharing a closet, but guys come all the way on foot from Guatemala to do these jobs. I used to do these jobs. I waited tables for a full decade, not as some part-time gig. I cleaned toilets.

    I have compassion for people who feel abandoned and alone, who feel beat down by life – that’s why I’m writing campaign checks to people who want to take more of my money, for Christ’s sake. But I have a lot less compassion when they think they’re too good to do what I did, or use their personal pain as an excuse to sh!t on the first brown scapegoat they can find.

    You want compassion? Then give compassion. And “those people” have a real hard time showing compassion for anyone who isn’t just precisely the same as them. You want respect? Do something useful. Take the lousy job and work your way up. And if even lousy jobs aren’t available, volunteer.

    /end old man rant.

  88. An Interested Party says:

    But none of the posters or commenters here would ever mock these people, would you? Beware, mocking is not soon forgotten. And more importantly, if Trump loses,, assuming no “Come to Jesus” by those of you who believe you are the betters, you should fear what comes next.

    Spare us all the sanctimonious bull$hit…it’s funny how those who want to defend these people usually have no problem ridiculing and demeaning people of color who also get the $hitty end of the stick, as well as immigrants, who, yes, are coming here illegally, but most of whom are only looking to provide for themselves and their families…as for “fearing” anything, that would be the GOP elites who should worry, as these portions of their party that they have ignored will be coming after them once their hero loses this election…the Republican Civil War is soon coming…

  89. gVOR08 says:

    @michael reynolds: Thank you. I was composing a reply along the same lines. Yours is better.

    In WI when faced with the possibility that teachers make more money because they have a uniuon, was their response, “We gotta get a union.”? No, it was, “We gotta take the union away from those uppity teachers.

    These people’s natural home is back in the Dem Party in an economic condition based coalition of the 90%. It would be unbeatable. But they won’t go there. Why?

    I’ll leave that as an exercise for JKB. Why, Jake, do black and brown people in the same economic conditions, and with the same tastes for NASCAR and vaping, not back Trump? Why have poor whites failed to form the natural coalition with poor blacks for 150 years? And as Michael says, how do we help them if they won’t do anything to help themselves? Except support Trump, which is the worst possible way to help themselves.

  90. James Pearce says:

    @barbintheboonies:

    I liked what you said in the first part of your post, but the second part sounded a bit threatening.

    We’ve seen enough buffoons in tricorn hats the last few years to be confused by the bluster. I don’t think we’ll see lines of marauders screaming, “Ride for ruin and the world’s ending!”

  91. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @michael reynolds:

    Beats the crap out of me. I’m already paying the kid across the way $100 a week to handle my lawn (in reality it’s us grossly overpaying to help a kid we adore save money for college), and I’m not sure how many more times per week my grass needs to be mowed or my leaves need to be raked up.

  92. Blue Galangal says:

    @PJ: Poll Tracker has HRC at 50% for the first time today.

  93. stonetools says:

    @JKB:

    Interestingly, if you read that interview, neither Arnade nor the interviewer (Russ Roberts) have a d@mned thing to say about how to help these angry people, except to say that their anger or despair isn’t helping. The reason is, of course, is because both recognize that “economic liberty” or lower taxes for the rich hasn’t helped, and won’t help. The fundamental thing that this election has revealed is the rubes aren’t buying the “trickle down economics”, tax-cuts-for-the rich-solve-everything BS anymore. That’s why they’re voting for Trump, who has another, even dumber approach-“keep out the browns and everything will work out”.
    The only way the Republicans have been able to survive, and thrive, over the past 8 years is that :

    1. Obama is black.
    2. The worst of the rise in the unemployment rate resulting from the 2008 crash happened after Obama took office
    3 Obama is black .

    Fortunately, our next Democratic President is white (albeit a woman and a Clinton) so there’s a possibility that these angry masses might listen to her and she may be able to pass the infrastructure spending program that might begin to lift them out of poverty and stagnation. But those guys have been angry at the wrong people for a long time and right wing propaganda is awesome at pushing their buttons, so… I don’t know.

  94. dxq says:

    I hear a lot of folks saying how terrible it is that a third to 40% of the electorate would support Trump. And it is.

    But put this in historical perspective: once upon a time, not so long ago, that kind of racism and cruelty propelled the Republican Party to the White House. Not once, not twice, but again and again and again. No more.

    And if you think that the difference is that the racism and cruelty were once quiet but are now loud, that argument too can be flipped on its head: It once took only the faintest of dog whistles to get the majority out to the polls. Now it takes a blaring speaker system and even that doesn’t work.

    The country that elected a black president with a foreign-sounding name—twice—may have turned a certain kind of corner.

    -corey robin

  95. SC_Birdflyte says:

    @Laura Koerber: I think you mean Lee Atwater, not Atwood.

  96. Rick DeMent says:

    @barbintheboonies:

    Most of the companies they work for threaten to shut down if the Democrats put more regulations on them. These jobs are in their minds the best they can do right now for their families.

    …. and yet the word Union is a filthy, dirty word to these people. THey are scared becase they have no leverage over the people who run the company and then vote to make sure they never will. Hard to feel sorry for them. When has “Trickle down” ever worked for them?

  97. barbintheboonies says:

    @stonetools: Propaganda machine is on both sides. We want to believe Hillary or Donald which ever side you`re on, but the truth is they are both beholden not to the masses but the few who put them there. Look all around the country, the great jobs that made our middle class are going away. I do not know what went wrong in our country, but it seem to start in the mid eighties and then NAFTA in the nineties. White collar jobs saw their wages rise, and blue collar jobs started to decline. We still want all the goods, but just send them out to be built. Then let’s really cheapen labor by importing more unskilled labor actually flood the market with them and not expect them to react. Just say screw them if they don`t like it tuff. While they live in their ivory towers making all the rules. Tell everyone what raciest bastards they are. We have a tremendous homeless problem in this country, and governors have no clue how to solve it. Yet let`s bring more people in and while your at it give them resources that should be given to seniors, and vets, and others who have worked for this country. You all can call me a bigot if you like. I do not believe that of myself. It`s time to address our problems first. Single payer health care would be a good start. Bring the jobs back to America and bring back living wages. Put money aside for elections to have an equal playing field for all. The government should have the capacity to own a satellite for broadcasting without having to have special interest to pay for air time. When we build America back up again then we can do more elsewhere. Prosecute any politician who is on the take and whoever is doing the bribing.

  98. barbintheboonies says:

    @Rick DeMent: Like I said before most of us are brainwashed, and that is on both sides. The companies some of them are hanging onto threaten them. I have heard it myself. Most good jobs in the sixties were union jobs and they set the stage for other companies to give pretty good wages. Now there are not many jobs left, they went elsewhere. This is not all Republicans doing this, it took many Democrats to push this also. They are both motivated by big money. So we really have nobody on our side.

  99. barbintheboonies says:

    @michael reynolds: Sorry again I have been misunderstood, I am talking about the mill jobs, the auto industry jobs the jobs that used to pay a living wage and now have been cheapened by greedy SOBs that want to pay less and less and benefits going away. We can not all be white collar people, but that`s what government is advocating for. Everyone go to college, okay good and when you graduate stand in line and wait for the job of your dreams to open up. All these kids are realizing the American dream is not what their parents faced. Our parents raised families on one paycheck and did pretty well. Even sent their kids to college. I am so sick of people so smug because I heard the same crap form the right Those lazy so and so`s they can work 2 jobs and maybe get a 3rd to make ends meat. That`s sounds so great, maybe this is why we have so many on the welfare line. I find it strange you feel sorry for people who choose to have kids they cannot afford but you put down people who are trying hard to do the right thing and work for a decent living.

  100. al-Ameda says:

    @JKB:

    But none of the posters or commenters here would ever mock these people, would you? Beware, mocking is not soon forgotten. And more importantly, if Trump loses,, assuming no “Come to Jesus” by those of you who believe you are the betters, you should fear what comes next.

    And of course we all know that these aggrieved people, these people who believe that they are mocked by “elites” and others on the Left, are not themselves mocking or scorning people on the Left who hold a different set of values than people on the Right. Nope, there’s none of that going on. Working class conservatives are not themselves mocking liberals and people with different values.

    When did it come to pass that Conservatives came to permanent victims of scorn and derision on the part of Liberals?

  101. gVOR08 says:

    @dxq:

    The country that elected a black president with a foreign-sounding name—twice—may have turned a certain kind of corner.

    That whole piece by Corey Robin you quoted is probably the most hopeful thing I’ll see today. And he’s right. Starting to look like Trump will beat the 27% Crazification Factor by maybe 10 points.

  102. barbintheboonies says:

    @al-Ameda: Maybe we can all start to listen and stop reacting against each other. There are some people on the right that make my blood boil and the same is true of the left. The politicians know this and play it to their advantage. Like not getting anything done. Remember when we all kind of got along. It`s a shame really how it got this far.

  103. barbintheboonies says:

    @An Interested Party: Now you sound threatening Come on now all of us have been jerked around, and fighting among each other gets us nowhere. I had a boss once that said stop pointing fingers, because next time they`ll be pointing at you. Let`s look for common ground. Then we can get our government to stop playing us as fools. They have done nothing to reconcile the people of this country. The last time we were together was 911. Took a tragedy of that magnitude to embrace each other. Please spare us the race card, a lot of us are struggling just as much as you. You do not have to be black or brown to be discriminated against.

  104. Pch101 says:

    @JKB:

    If you didn’t say so much stupid s**t, then you wouldn’t be regarded as as idiot.

    Don’t blame me for your lack of smarts. The alternative to mocking you is to serve as your enabler, and I am not alone in having no desire to coddle you or your addiction to stupid.

    Up your game, and you won’t have these problems. Take some personal responsibility instead of being a whiner.

  105. James Pearce says:

    @barbintheboonies:

    Let`s look for common ground.

    The most common belief in America right now is the belief that Donald Trump shouldn’t be our next president.

  106. barbintheboonies says:

    @James Pearce: I agree with that

  107. michael reynolds says:

    @barbintheboonies:

    1) Where did the jobs go? The world changed, that’s where they went. The cold war ended and suddenly we had an extra billion or so people to compete with (but also to sell to). You need to understand something: what happened between 1945 and the late 80’s was an anomaly. That was not normal. This is normal now. You see the same conditions in every developed nation on earth. It’s not Bush, it’s not Obama, it’s reality.

    2) Single payer? Guess who made that impossible even to suggest 8 years ago? That’s right, the Republicans which idiot voters keep electing. Now you want to talk single payer? Now? Where were all you people 8 fwcking years ago? Oh, that’s right, you were busy being distracted by birtherism and the rest of the GOP dog whistle tricks for training rubes.

    3) You don’t like being called racists? Then stop being racists. And don’t tell me that’s not what’s going on because that is exactly what is going on. You people have been so shamelessly manipulated by the media you’re so subservient to intellectually – from Fox on down to Breitbart – that you are literally no longer capable of recognizing reality. You let yourselves be played again and again and again, and all it ever takes to knock you folks into line is some billionaire’s mouthpiece muttering about some brown person getting more than you got.

    4) You have a hard-on against elites? Then why in God’s name are you supporting a party and a candidate that has as its top priority making the rich richer? 180k. That’s what Trump wanted me to keep last year. That helps you and the working folks how exactly? Explain how me buying a villa in the Algarve helps you.

    Bottom line: Stop being stupid. Stop being racist. Stop blaming everyone else for your problems. Find a way to deal with reality that does not involve you sh!tting on brown people and women and inevitably doing the work of creating and enriching the very elites you say you don’t like.

    We can’t help you until you stop being stupid. Is that clear enough? We cannot save you from yourselves if you insist on committing suicide. Stop being stupid. Stop swallowing every transparent lie you hear that happens to tickle your hate-erogenous zones. Turn off Breitbart and Limbaugh. Rejoin reality. I and others like me are literally fighting to help you, trying to help you, actively spending money to help you, but we cannot save you from yourselves.

    Had you morons nice folks listened to Democrats the last 30 years since Saint Ronnie Reagan began dismantling the unions that were the only protection you people had, you’d almost certainly be better off today, and I’d most likely be a bit worse off. Why do you keep doing that? Why do you keep shoveling money out of your pockets and into mine? Stop.

  108. Just 'nutha ig'rant cracker says:

    @al-Ameda: It has always been thus to my knowledge. I knew that liberals scorned conservatives when I was 13 and in junior high school–51 years ago. You guys never appreciated us and it took me a long time to decide that I didn’t appreciate us either.

    At this point in my life, my mantra is “the conservative movement is absolutely, entirely, and comprehensively wrong in matters of economic policy, social policy, and foreign policy.” I look forward to a day when conservatism rethinks its positions and at least attempts to be a viable opposition, but I doubt that I will see it in my lifetime. I’m uncomfortable being liberal, but as Martin Luther said, “Here I stand. God help me, I have no other place.”

  109. barbintheboonies says:

    @michael reynolds: I voted Democrat all of my voting years That`s where I have been. I cannot understand when we did have all the ducks in a row in 2009 why was nothing pushed through then. We will see what happens when Hillary wins won`t we. We know she will. Then if everything still stays the same WHAT will people do then Get back and do the same, blame the other for it. I am not a Republican or Democrat don`t assume anything it makes an ass out of u and me.

  110. barbintheboonies says:

    @michael reynolds: About jobs going away You paint a bleak future for us all if we are to accept that reality. So jobs go else where and the rest of us should just live off the government or, take donations from the benevolence of generous people like yourself. I really don`t like that myself. I prefer we take our jobs back. I care more about all people, and want them to have the dignity of having someplace to go to every day and make a living wage to support their families. About health care, when insurance companies start making decisions about our health, do you really think they have your best interest? I go to the doctor now I am allowed maybe ten minutes and if I ask a question I`m told to make another appointment for that. Is this the new reality too? I liked it better when Doctors cared for me.

  111. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @barbintheboonies:

    About jobs going away You paint a bleak future for us all if we are to accept that reality. So jobs go else where and the rest of us should just live off the government or, take donations from the benevolence of generous people like yourself.

    The funny thing about reality is that it remains, whether you accept it or not. The simple fact of the matter is that, in a global labor market, US workers simply cost too much. From the standpoint of Mr. Manufacturer, why would he pay a worker in the US the prevailing factory rate, health insurance, retirement, etc. etc when he can pay a guy in Malaysia cents on the dollar, with no overtime – ever, no retirement and no healthcare.

    Americans fall into the trap of believing that the period of aberrant prosperity between the end of World War II (when we were the only industrial economy left standing) to the early 70s (when everybody else had successfully rebuilt their production infrastructure, and a much more efficient & modern infrastructure at that) was normal. It wasn’t. We had a captive audience who would buy everything we could make for a few decades, and it was great while it lasted.

    But it was never going to last forever. It ended, and it took the industrial workers of the middle class with it.

    Cold, hard truth time – It’s only going to get harder going forward, so the choices are to compete or get left behind.

    Sure, it’s a cynical, bottom line way of looking at the world, but it’s reality nonetheless.

  112. stonetools says:

    @barbintheboonies:

    With the right approach there can be lots of jobs-different ones.

    1.The infrastructure of this country is crumbling and needs to be rebuilt. Those jobs can’t be exported overseas.
    2. We could take a page out of Germany’s approach and have apprenticeship programs starting after high school that can feed into skilled manufacturing jobs.

    3. We could do a new Civilian Conservation Corps, just like was done during the Great Depression, and put young people to work planting trees in National Parks and rehabbing inner city housing.

    4. We can follow what we did with the stimulus and invest much more in renewable energy industries, including manufacturing and installing solar panels, building out a network of battery stations for electric cars, and rebuilding the power grid to make it smarter. Most of these jobs are not exportable.

    So there are things we can do. Unfortunately, only the Democrats are interested in doing those things. What has to happen is those whites in the South and Appalachia who want to return things to 1950, including the 1950 racial caste system, need to give up on that dream and give the Democrats a chance to create that new future with different jobs. Sadly, as we have seen they still hanker for that dream-hence Trump.

    Here, from Hillary’s website:

    In America, we build great things together—from the transcontinental railroad to the interstate highway system to the Hoover Dam. But today, our investments in infrastructure are roughly half what they were 35 years ago. That’s why Hillary Clinton has announced a $275 billion, five-year plan to rebuild our infrastructure—and put Americans to work in the process. She’ll work to pass her infrastructure plan in her first 100 days of office, as part of a comprehensive agenda to create the next generation of good-paying jobs.

    As president, Hillary will:

    Repair and expand our roads and bridges. Hillary will make smart investments to improve our roads, reduce congestion, and slash the “pothole tax” that drivers silently pay each and every day.
    Lower transportation costs and unlock economic opportunity by expanding public transit options. Hillary will encourage local governments to work with low-income communities to ensure unemployed and underemployed Americans are connected to good jobs.
    Connect all Americans to the internet. Hillary will work to ensure that by 2020, 100 percent of households in America will have access to affordable broadband. She will also invest new resources in bringing free Wi-Fi to public buildings and public transportation.
    Invest in building world-class American airports and modernize our national airspace system. These investments will reduce carbon emissions and save travelers and airlines an estimated $100 billion in avoided delays over the next 15 years.
    Build energy infrastructure for the 21st century. We can unlock America’s clean energy potential by modernizing infrastructure like dams, levees, and wastewater systems—saving billions of gallons in clean drinking water and generating clean energy.

  113. James Pearce says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    From the standpoint of Mr. Manufacturer, why would he pay a worker in the US the prevailing factory rate, health insurance, retirement, etc. etc when he can pay a guy in Malaysia cents on the dollar, with no overtime – ever, no retirement and no healthcare.

    Why pay a guy in Malaysia cents on the dollar when you can buy (or build) a machine to make things for you?

    Engineer in some redundancy, which would be prohibitively expensive in a human operation, and you can run that thing 24X7, although I suppose that would be unethical considering it would cost both Bubba and his buddy in Malaysia their jobs.

  114. DrDaveT says:

    @barbintheboonies:

    So jobs go else where and the rest of us should just live off the government or, take donations from the benevolence of generous people like yourself.

    There are three kinds of jobs:
    1. Jobs a machine can do better and cheaper than you can
    2. Jobs a Malaysian kid can do vastly cheaper than you can
    3. The rest

    What the rest of us should do is learn to do jobs in category #3. At the high end, that’s jobs that PhDs like me do, that doctors and lawyers and artists and software developers do. At the low end, that’s jobs that illegals from El Salvador do because native USAns won’t. In the middle, that’s a zillion skilled trades like plumbers and electricians and nurses and teachers and such. Oh, and all of those personal service sector jobs like cooks and waitresses and masseurs and such.

    What you can’t have is that nice-paying factory job your father and grandfather had, in the town you were born in. I have only limited patience with people who won’t study hard enough for the good jobs, won’t deign to do the scut jobs, and won’t move to where the work is — but have plenty of energy left to complain about how there are no good jobs in South Fork any more.

    It may be that small town America can be saved, through the miracle of telework and the Internet of Things. Or it may be that small town America is doomed — not enough jobs to support a viable service industry base. Either way, the Old Way of small towns based around many small farms and a few factories is gone forever. It’s time to adapt.

  115. Mikey says:

    It’s more than just “we can pay the Malaysian cents on the dollar.”

    There aren’t a whole lot of “new” things. Pretty much everything we buy is the same stuff we’ve been buying for decades. There isn’t much to do with washing machines and refrigerators and even clothing. The last new big innovation was information systems networking and that’s going on 25 years now.

    And we’ve been getting ever more efficient in producing those things. Fewer people and less capital can produce more than ever before. Between better, more efficient design, better processes, and automation, we can produce the same widgets with less than half the people.

    This is called “progress” and it’s not going to stop. Ever.

    There will be a time some people will become essentially unemployable. We need to start looking at things like a guaranteed basic income, but the conservatives would rather let people starve. So what do we do? I wish I knew. If I did I’d be richer than Bill Gates eventually.

  116. Jen says:

    On the jobs issue, there’s also the problem of skills mismatch, combined with the inability or unwillingness of people to retrain.

    I’m in NH, and in the Northeast, there are a lot of mill workers (usually paper mills) who are now out of work. They are largely in rural towns, and they are generally speaking in their 50’s. We also have one of the lowest unemployment rates in the nation (~3.9%). There ARE jobs here, but they are highly specialized jobs that are reliant on technology, coding, etc. A 50 year old person in the north woods isn’t going to be a skills fit for those jobs, and they aren’t going to be able to afford to (or be willing to) move to where the jobs are. No company is going to sink thousands of dollars into training them when they’ll retire in less than 15 years.

    We need to do a much better job in this country of ensuring workers are more well-rounded and adaptable. The job market will continue to shift rapidly, and only those who are able to adjust quickly will survive.

  117. barbintheboonies says:

    So I guess this is the reality so why bother to care at all. We still have cheapened the market with a flood of unskilled workers that compete with Americans. The rich keep widening the divide of wealth, as many of us slip into poverty. We`ll see how this all works out. We are allowing ourselves to become slaves.

  118. Jen says:

    @barbintheboonies: One thing to remember: it’s not just “unskilled” workers with whom we are competing. We’re also competing with skilled workers overseas–and I don’t just mean China and India. There are plenty of tech jobs being outsourced to Ireland because they’ve managed to create an attractive industry infrastructure.

    This is all very, very complicated. There are no easy answers, and there is no magic unicorn politician who can make it all better. We are in a global economy and we need to have a multi-faceted approach to examining and reforming the US skills base, corporate taxation and incentives, trade negotiation, international policies on the treatment of workers, and more. Oh, and all of that stuff is further complicated by global political issues and tensions that also weave into it: for example, how would our nation fare if we suddenly found ourselves paying the $9 a gallon that the UK pays for gas? (Answer: we’d be in a lot of trouble.)

    This is precisely why I support Secretary Clinton for president. This stuff is enormously complex and she’s smart.

  119. barbintheboonies says:

    @Jen: I am talking about in the US and I am sure you knew that. Everyone here has a computer or other electronic device. Our country men decided why not make it cheap in China making them poor people slaves to our billionaires now they wish to do the same here. Just wait it will start moving up the ladder and then you may feel the pinch yourself.

  120. barbintheboonies says:

    @Jen: And yet we keep upping the retirement age, after a person gets to a certain age their bodies are starting to decline, but we will always need construction workers and iron workers etc. You want them skilled in welding and such, but let`s hope they die when they reach 50. Good by to the days when we retired our co workers with dignity. It`s easy to learn new programs on a computer if that`s what your into. Not so easy to completely learn a new trade. If this is the new world order so be it and good luck to you all.

  121. michael reynolds says:

    @barbintheboonies:

    No, it’s not about being slaves, rather the opposite. In the long-term I think we are moving away from the necessity of human work, at least in the developed world. @HarvardLawyer and @DrDave explained it nicely: the reality is that you and I and all of us are in competition with people who live on nothing, and machines that live on less. So, I strongly suspect we will see labor force participation numbers continue to slide gradually downward. Some portion of the US population is simply not going to work but yes, be dependent on government.

    So it may be the case that tens of millions of people never learn what it’s like to put in 30 years at a factory or restaurant or insurance office.

    Are you so sure that’s a tragedy? Let’s ask Average American which he prefers:

    1) A life where you sit around getting high and watching Netflix and earn just enough to get by.

    Or,

    2) A life where you put in 30 years at Wal-Mart and earn just enough to get by.

    Now, me, I would pick #2, because I am a product of my age, and for me work is inherently ennobling and worthwhile, and I have no life. But I’d bet you right now that if faced with that choice – and realistically, for lots of people that is the choice – many people, maybe even most, would pick (1).

    Rather than engage in a doomed effort to ‘re-take’ what was never ‘ours’ to begin with, maybe we should begin to adjust to the likely future.

  122. DrDaveT says:

    @barbintheboonies:

    So I guess this is the reality so why bother to care at all.

    No — this is the reality so let’s do something productive and useful to move forward from here, rather than pining for a misremembered past or just throwing rocks.

    We still have cheapened the market with a flood of unskilled workers that compete with Americans.

    You keep saying this, but it’s still not true. Americans have lost their blue collar manufacturing jobs to a mix of offshore workers and machines. The ‘flood’ of unskilled workers — about 1% of our populations, last time I checked — is a red herring. (Or, in this case, a brown and yellow herring.)

    The rich keep widening the divide of wealth, as many of us slip into poverty.

    Now THAT is a real problem. Exactly one of our political parties agrees, and wants to do something about it.

  123. Grewgills says:

    @DrDaveT:

    The ‘flood’ of unskilled workers — about 1% of our populations, last time I checked

    The illegal immigrant population was estimated at about 11 million last I checked or a bit under 3.5% of our population. I would hazard a guess that most of the illegal immigrants are taking low skilled jobs. Your larger point is well taken though. 3% isn’t exactly a flood either.
    The overall immigrant population looks to be about 42 million or a bit over 13% of our population, but many (probably most) of them are more high skilled workers, since other than the green card lottery it isn’t easy to move here without a marketable skill.

  124. DrDaveT says:

    @Grewgills:

    The illegal immigrant population was estimated at about 11 million last I checked or a bit under 3.5% of our population.

    I was trying to make a guess at the fraction of the work-seeking population. I don’t have age distributions handy.

    But yeah, 1% or 3% or 5%, it’s just not credible that they’re taking all the good jobs away from the native-born.